Saturday, October 4, 2014

Soup with Chicken, Pasta, Spinach, Beans and Tomatoes

by Peg Cochran

In other words, soup with everything but the kitchen sink.  This is a "what's in the pantry" kind of soup.  Today it was on the chilly side  --autumn is rushing in after an unexpected warm spell where all anyone wanted to do was grill because we knew the season would soon be over.  But today was definitely a soup day.  I absolutely adore soup, and it takes the sting out of the fact that winter is breathing down our neck. (Although PLEASE no ten foot snow piles this year, okay?)

1 to 2 tablespoons olive oil (depending on how closely you are watching your calories!)
1 medium to large onion, diced
2 carrots shredded (easy peasy in the food processor)
2 cloves garlic, minced
5 cups chicken broth (homemade or canned)
1 14.5-ounce can diced tomatoes plus juice
1 can cannellini beans 
2 cups shredded, cooked chicken breast
1 cup elbow macaroni or ditalini or tubetini
1/2 5-ounce bag baby spinach
Freshly grated Parmesan cheese

Heat oil in a large soup pot.  Add onion, carrot and garlic and cook until wilted--about 3 to 5 minutes.  Add chicken broth, tomatoes, cannellini beans and chicken and cook 10 to 15 minutes at a simmer to develop flavors. 

Bring soup to a boil, add pasta, reduce heat and cook according to pasta directions.  Just before the pasta is done, stir in about two handfuls of spinach and cook until spinach wilts. 

Spoon into bowls and add a healthy grating of fresh Parmesan cheese. 

Chop an onion

Shred a couple of carrots--a great way to hide veggies in a dish.

Add chicken broth and diced tomatoes 

You can use regular spinach, but baby spinach is so tender!


Full of delicious goodness!


Huh?  What does this have to do with soup?  Nothing.  But when I hard-boiled this egg I discovered it was double-yolked and I had to share this picture with you!

Have you tried the first book in my Gourmet De-Lite series?

Preparing calorie-conscious meals for the dieters of Woodstone, Connecticut, Gigi Fitzgerald knows a cheater when she sees one. And when murder is on the menu, she's ready to get the skinny on whodunit...
And the first in my Lucille series...
For middle-aged “Jersey girl” Lucille Mazzarella, only two things in life really count—her family and her friends. When her brother-in-law’s body falls out of a church confessional, everything she holds dear is threatened, especially when the police arrest her husband for the murder.

Plagued by hot flashes, a thickening waistline, a mother addicted to the home shopping channel, and a sexy old flame who’s come back to town, Lucille really has her hands full. And while she may not know much about solving crimes, this traditional churchgoer with very modern attitudes knows that with some prayers, some fast thinking, and some even faster talk she might just be able to nail the killer and restore order to her life.


  1. I love "what's-in-the-pantry" cooking! My scientist husband doesn't get it--he wants a recipe with fussy things like measurements. Bah! Go where your tastebuds lead you.

    The first (and so far only) time I saw a double-yolked egg, I was making fried eggs and bingo, there it was. I said "hello!" out loud. Are they supposed to be good luck?

    1. Sheila, my husband is not an engineer but comes from a family of them--he, too, is all about measurements and declares it "magic" which I just whip something up with what I have on hand. I've had double yolks when baking, but I've never hard-boiled one. Yes, they are supposed to be good luck!

  2. Your soup looks great, I'm printing as we speak. I'll probably sub a can of black beans for the macaroni just because my husband likes bean soup. When I get a double yolked egg, I have to scramble instead of fry. There's a bit of an "ewww" factor for me. I'll check out your mysteries, too!

    1. That's the beauty of a recipe like this--you can substitute what you like!

  3. Your soup looks delicious! I was going to make Posole for dinner - may have to change my plan. I have yet to find a double yolked egg, but I keep looking. I buy my eggs from the Farmers Market; perhaps one day I'll be lucky.

    1. I was baking something once and two out of the four eggs had double yolks! Twice the good luck?

  4. Way to stave off the fall blues Peg--this looks wonderful! I think a double yolk must be lucky--what a cool picture...

    1. Lucy, they say double yolks are supposed to be good luck--I'm waiting lol.

  5. Aren't double yolks a wonderful surprise?
    This sounds like a lovely dish for welcoming in autumn (but no winter with 10' drifts!).

    1. Libby, I'm with you! I enjoy a little snow but for awhile last year I thought I'd been transported to Alaska!

  6. This looks delish, Peg! And I love the square bowls too.